Syrian President Bashar Assad said in an interview he believes President-elect Donald Trump could potentially be an ally of the Syrian government's fight against terrorism.
“His rhetoric during the campaign was positive regarding the terrorism, which is our priority today," Assad told Russian news site RT. "Anything else is not priority, so, I wouldn't focus on anything else, the rest is American, let's say, internal matters, I wouldn't worry about. But the question whether Trump has the will or the ability to implement what he just mentioned.”
Assad went on to criticize the U.S. establishment's powerful groups for attempting to thwart Trump's election so it could continue U.S. military intervention abroad. He also questioned whether Trump would be able to follow through on his campaign promises of changing age-old U.S. policy.
“You know that most of the mainstream media and big corporate, the lobbies, the Congress, even some in his party were against him; they want to have more hegemony, more conflict with Russia, more interference in different countries, toppling governments, and so on,” Assad said. “[Trump] said something in the other direction. Could he sustain against all those after he started next month? That's the question. If he could, I think the world will be in a different place, because the most important thing is the relation between Russia and the Unites States. If he goes towards that relation, most of the tension around the world will be pacified.”
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Assad added: “That's very important for us in Syria, but I don't think anyone has the answer to that. He wasn't a politician, so, we don't have any reference to judge him, first. Second, nobody can tell what kind of pattern is it going to be next month and after.”
Assad's forces are accused of killing scores of civilians in the Syrian city of Aleppo on Dec. 13. Rebel forces held the city since 2012, but Syrian government forces, helped by Russian air power, may be close to regaining control of the city.
United Nations officials said the attack could be considered a war crime, reports BBC.